Bedroom in Wrexham house

5 energy-saving tips when running an oil boiler

Your boiler is one of the most important appliances in your home, keeping you warm and comfortable all year round and helping to create an enjoyable atmosphere that you can relax in. Although the initial investment for an oil boiler is typically higher than for a gas boiler, the running costs today are comparable - and represent a significant monthly expense for most households. So how can you save energy and make your heating oil last longer? Read on for some top tips.

1. Learn to love a lower temperature

Living at a lower temperature is one of the easiest ways to save energy in the home. Simply reducing the temperature of your home by just 1°C can result in energy savings as high as 6%, which will make your oil last considerably longer. In most cases, you won’t even feel the difference - except in your wallet.

While different temperatures are sometimes desirable for different rooms such as kitchens and bathrooms, it is generally agreed that a temperature of between 18°C - 21°C is the optimum temperature for the home, not just when it comes to saving energy, but also for general health. If you can adapt to the lower end of this range, you can really start to save.

2. Don’t turn radiators off

According to leading boiler manufacturer Viessmann, specialists in energy efficient heating, turning radiators completely off during colder seasons does not improve efficiency. Instead, it is recommended that they are left at a very low temperature. This way, you are not using extra energy to heat a home that is cold.

3. Insulate heating pipes

The pipes that carry water around your home from the boiler to the radiators are also a significant heat loss factor. This is even more pronounced in older homes. A modest investment in insulating your central heating pipes can result in the water reaching the radiators at 2-4°C hotter. As a result, it may be possible to reduce the water temperature setting on your oil boiler and this can lead to significant long-term savings.

4. Keep it clean and clear

One of the easiest ways to maximise the efficiency of your oil central heating is something that costs nothing at all and requires a minimum of effort - keeping your radiators clean and clear. Curtains, sofas and other soft furnishings can have a big impact on efficiency and effectiveness if they are blocking radiators, which results in unneccessary fuel consumption as they are having to work harder to maintain a comfortable temperature. Keeping your radiators free of dust and lint will also help to maximise efficiency.

5. Deal with draughts

Drafts are not just a problem for that annoying chill they create - they also eat into your oil reserves and can even affect performance if you have have a new generation, energy saving boiler. The biggest heat loss generally occurs at windows, so it is important to make sure that seals are intact and preventing any airflow. Usually the you can detect any air currents with the back of your hand when it is cooler at night. If you do detect an air flow, consider changing the seals and also the latches if the window is not closing tightly enough.

First, make sure that your windows all seal properly and that there are no draughts. Even the slightest of draughts can cause a radiator to work much harder than it needs to, as it is constantly trying to heat up this stream of cold air. If you do have poorly sealed windows, consider replacing the seals and adjusting the latches if they have become loose. Getting a specialist to have a look may save you both time and money in the long run. Using thermal blinds and/or curtains can also have a big impact. Of course, be careful not to obstruct the radiator, as mentioned earlier.

For all your oil boiler installation and service needs across North Wales, speak to the experts at D.R. Plumbing & Heating today. Call now on Wrexham 01978 291 923 or Mold 01352 620 125 to find out more or request a free, no-obligation quotation.

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